Eye Post # 14: Caring For Your Eyes During Allergy Season

Thursday, June 20, 2019

When the allergy season rolls around in the spring and summer, so many people are hit with the classic symptoms: runny nose, sneezes, congestion, and of course the itchy, watery eyes. I have a seasonal allergy to grass seeds (so random) and it's the worst come the month of June. My eyes get so itchy and it really affects my day if I don't do anything to stop it.

It's so tempting to just rub your eyes until the itch goes away. Most of the time the itch only gets worse, your eyes become bloodshot, and you start tearing up. For some individuals, their eyes get a bit swollen too as a reaction to the allergens. Eye health is very important to me, so here are some tips to how you can treat your eyes during the allergy season so the symptoms aren't as bothersome.

1. Confirm how your eyes are reacting to allergens.

First and foremost, figure out how your eyes are reacting to allergens. Are they swollen and puffy? are they itchy? Are they watery? Are they always bloodshot? Or all of the above! It'll help you decide how you will treat and care for your eyes.

2. Treat the different symptoms.

Don't just leave it, treat the different symptoms. There are many home remedies that you can do to minimize the different symptoms and reactions, and also products that you can purchase over the counter at the drugstore. Of course, taking antihistamine tablets will reduce the overall allergic symptoms in your body, including the eyes. However, if that's not enough and you still want to go a step further to care for your eyes, here are some things that you can do:

- If your eyes are still swollen, you can wet a face cloth with cool water and lay it over your eyes for 5-10 minutes.
- If your eyes are still itchy or red, you can use eye drops to help give moisture to your eyes and act as a shield against allergens that may come in contact with your eye. There are specific eye drops for allergy relief (e.g. Hylo Dual, Systane Zaditor) but sometimes regular eye drops may already give your eyes some relief from the itchiness (e.g. Systane Ultra).

- Wear sunglasses when you're outside. It simply makes it harder for allergens to come in contact with your eyes and you will also be protected from UV.
- If you are a biweekly or monthly contact lens wearer, be more proactive in cleaning your contact lenses so there will be no buildup of gunk and allergens on your lenses. Make sure you're also regularly cleaning the contact lens storing container as well.
- Include more Omega-3 into your diet (I personally learned this from my optometrist colleague). Whether it's incorporating food that contains more Omega 3 (e.g. salmon, sardines, nuts) or taking supplements, it can help reduce the allergic symptoms as well.

3. Don't be afraid to see an eyecare specialist for your eyes, even though it may be a seasonal issue.

Optometrists are there to make sure your eyes are healthy and well treated, all year round. There are some people that have more severe allergic reactions and their eyes cannot tolerate it. There are medications that can be prescribed by an optometrist to tackle those symptoms that work a bit stronger than over the counter products (e.g. Bepreve eye drops). They'll also make sure that your overall eye health is in order. Opticians can help you select appropriate sunwear so your eyes are protected and stylish at the same time!

Hopefully this helps! Let's get through this allergy season together and help our eyes feel better! If you're interested in seeing the other posts I've written in this series, click here to check them out. :)

Until next time, Des

(Follow me on Instagram @desiree.pong here to stay up to date with my everyday life!)

1 comment :

  1. I so have to try!



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